Cantor and conductor Dr. Mordechai Sobol passed away at the age of 67.
Sobol was in the United States for the holidays, suffered a stroke and was taken to the hospital, where doctors tried to stabilize his condition, but their efforts failed. The date of his funeral has not yet been determined.
Sobol was considered a reviver of the cantorial tradition in our generation and was a world expert in the field. Sobol received the Education Prize from President Yitzhak Navon in 2006, and was awarded the Jerusalem Prize for his special contribution to the revival of the cantorial singing in Israel.
Sobol served as musical director and regular conductor of the Yuval Symphony Orchestra, appearing in hundreds of concerts in Israel and abroad, in which he conducted many symphonic orchestras, and later established generations of cantors.
Sobol studied the art of cantorial singing from the age of eight with the late cantor Shlomo Ravitz, who saw in Sobol an heir of the cantorial tradition. Over the years, Dr. Sobol composed and orchestrated hundreds of works and was regularly invited to music festivals throughout the world, including in New York, Warsaw, and Montreal.
Among his numerous musical works are dozens of records with the best singers, including a record of Jewish music with the singer Haim Moshe, as well as a joint album with the Ethnix group and Yehoram Gaon.
Sobol has trained the world's leading cantors over the years, among them Yitzhak Meir Helfgott, Yaakov Lemer, Chaim Adler, Tzvi Weiss, Netanel Hershtik, Shay Abramson and others.
In his many concerts, he collaborated both with the world's leading cantors, whom he mentored from the beginning of his career, and with Israeli singers such as David Daor and Amir Benayoun.
Sobol’s family and friends said, "Sobol was a Jew and a Zionist in every fiber of his being, who received dozens of proposals to leave the country and serve as cantor abroad, but he refused all. He was worthy of receiving the Israel Prize and instead was brought to an Israeli grave.”